The Doors

Biography

The Doors

The Doors were an American rock band, active in the late 1960s and early 1970s and often considered as pioneers of acid-rock, blues-rock and psychedelia. The Doors comprised vocalist Jim Morrison, guitarist Robby Krieger, keyboardist Ray Manzarek and drummer John Densmore. The Doors released nine studio albums, many of which achieved platinum status, and left a trail of memorable singles including 'Light My Fire', 'Break on Through (To the Other Side)' and 'Riders on the Storm'. Throughout their career The Doors exuded an aura of 'sex, drugs and rock'n' roll', culminating in Morrison's death in 1971.

Early Days

Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek met at the UCLA Graduate School of Film in California and decided to form a band after Morison impressed Manzarek with an original poem entitled 'Moonlight Drive'. Manzarek, who was playing in another band at the time, poached John Densmore and Robby Krieger from the Psychedelic Rangers. Bassist Pat Sullivan, along with other musicians, helped the band to record a demo. By the end of 1965 the band had chosen a name (inspired by Aldous Huxley's book 'The Doors of Perception'), the line-up was complete, and The Doors were born.

In 1966 The Doors began playing live and supported Van Morrison's group Them at the Whisky a Go Go on Sunset Strip. On the recommendation of Love's Arthur Lee they were snapped up by Elektra Records. Later that year, The Doors recorded their debut album and in January 1967 'The Doors' was released, reaching number two in the US chart. Although the lead single 'Break on Through (To the Other Side)' didn't break into the Top 100, its follow up 'Light My Fire' hit the number one spot. At the time The Doors were grouped with other 'counterculture' bands such as Jefferson Airplane and The Byrds.

Success

The Doors' second album 'Strange Days', released in October 1967, was also well received, with the singles 'People Are Strange' and 'Love Me Two Times' both climbing high in the charts.

By the time their next album, 'Waiting for the Sun', was released in 1968, however, Morrison was drinking heavily and many of The Doors' shows were descending into riots. Morrison was arrested for public obscenity and disorderly conduct, and The Doors' first European tour ended with his drug-induced collapse in Amsterdam. 'Waiting for the Sun' featured Morrison's mythical alter ego, the 'Lizard King', and spawned the number one single 'Hello, I Love You'.

Morrison's on-stage behaviour became increasingly erratic, veering between total disinterest and emotional outbursts, often screaming at the audience. Following a particularly outrageous gig in Miami, Florida, a warrant was put out for Morrison's arrest, causing promoters to cancel The Doors' upcoming shows.

'The Soft Parade' was released in June 1969 and although the first single to be taken from it, 'Touch Me', reached number three in the charts, successive singles failed to do as well. 1970 saw The Doors release their fifth studio album, 'Morrison Hotel', which steered away from the previous album's experimental territory, and towards a heavier blues-rock sound. The Doors continued in this vein with 1971's 'L.A. Woman' which produced the top twenty singles 'Love Her Madly' and 'Riders on the Storm' and was warmly received by critics and fans alike.

During the summer of 1970 The Doors performed at the Isle of Wight Festival alongside Jimi Hendrix, The Who, and Joni Mitchell. In December that year, at the Warehouse in New Orleans, The Doors played their last ever show, during which Morrison had a breakdown on stage. Consequently, The Doors decided to retire from performing live and Morrison moved to Paris to concentrate on his writing.

Post-Morrison

Jim Morrison's body was found in the bathtub in his apartment on 3rd July 1971. Although it was concluded that he died of a heart attack, rumours still circulate about the exact cause of his death at the age of twenty-seven.

In October 1971 the remaining members of The Doors, with Krieger and Manzarek now on vocals, released the album 'Other Voices'. This was followed by the final Doors' album 'Full Circle' in 1972.

The Doors continued to record as a trio and even toyed with the idea of recruiting Iggy Pop, but the band eventually split in 1973. Five years later, The Doors reunited to release 'An American Prayer', an album containing music recorded to accompany Morrison's poetry.

Numerous live albums, box sets and compilations by The Doors have been released over the years and, in 1991, Oliver Stone's film biography of the group, starring Val Kilmer as Morrison, was released, sparking a renewed interest in the band.

Read More

Robby Krieger Recruiting Musicians For Ray Manzarek Tribute

10th February 2014 -

 News

The Doors guitarist Robby Krieger is assembling a group of musicians for a memorial concert in honour of his late bandmate Ray Manzarek.Keyboardist Manzarek died of bile duct cancer in May last year (13) and...

A Week In News: Ray Manzarek Dies, Taylor Swift's Disgusted Reaction and Brad Pitt Talks Drugs

22nd May 2013 -

 News

End of the Night: Tributes were paid this week to Ray Manzarek, pioneering keyboardist with The Doors who died in Germany aged 74. He formed the band with lead singer Jim Morrison after a chance...

RIP Ray Manzarek: Doors Man's Influence Cannot Be Quantified

21st May 2013 -

 News

“Tonight, Monday May 20th, The Whisky A Go Go, The Roxy, The Viper Room and The House Of Blues on The Sunset Strip will all dim their lights at 9:31PM PDT in honor of Ray...

Ray Manzarek Passes Away Following Hidden Battle With Cancer

21st May 2013 -

 News

Ray Manzarek, the keyboard player and co-founded of The Doors with Jim Morrison, passed away at a clinic in Germany Monday (May 20), according to a post on the band's Facebook page. He was 74-year-old.Manzarek...

Z-Machine Starts Production On Documentary Film, Before The End: Jim Morrison Comes Age

21st March 2013 -

 Press

Z-Machine announced that production has begun on Before the End: Jim Morrison Comes of Age. With a focus on bringing the legend down to earth, the independent documentary feature follows the trajectory of Jim Morrison's...

Surprise! Johnny Depp Makes Impromptu Appearance Onstage With Alice Cooper

3rd December 2012 -

 News

Johnny Depp appears to be forging a new career for himself as ‘surprise guitarist’ for some of the world’s biggest rock artists.OK, so we have scant evidence on which to be basing this claim but...

Patrick Stewart Says He's Living In A 'War Zone'

13th April 2012 -

 News

Sir Patrick Stewart says living in the English countryside is like being in a ''war zone''.The 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' actor resides in a £2.2 million mansion in the Cotswolds area of Oxfordshire with...

Katie Price Plans Marathon Sex Session

4th August 2009 -

 News

Katie Price and her new lover have vowed to spend 48 hours in bed.The former glamour model - known as Jordan - and cage fighter Alex Reid arrived in Marbella, Spain, on Sunday (02.08.09) and...

Fanzine Bosses Uncover Lost Jim Morrison Painting

11th March 2009 -

 News

A lost painting commissioned by THE DOORS star JIM MORRISON just before his death has been turned into a new must-have poster for his fans. Artist T.E. Breitenbach created The Morrison Triptych at the request of...

The Doors, Perception, Album Audio Streams

9th November 2006 -

 Video

The Doors Perception Album Audio Streams To celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of the greatest rock bands of all time with the November 21 release of Perception. The 6-CD/6-DVD boxed set presents all of...

Kilmer Lights Up The Whisky A Go Go As Jim Morrison

9th November 2006 -

 News

VAL KILMER returned to the stage as rock legend JIM MORRISON last night (08NOV06) when he joined THE DOORS for a 40th anniversary show in Hollywood. Group members JOHN DENSMORE, ROBBY KRIEGER and RAY MANZAREK...

Bodyguard: 'Pamela Made Morrison Mad'

4th March 2006 -

 News

JIM MORRISON's longtime bodyguard TONY FUNCHES has poured scorn on the belief that the rock legend's girlfriend PAMELA COURSON was the love of his life - she was a pain. THE DOORS legend died in...

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